FAQ: Transferring Phone Numbers

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What is port eligibility?

Port eligibility is the process of verifying that your phone number is eligible to be transferred (or ported) from your existing wireless provider to Ting. This is also referred to as “Local Number Portability” (LNP). LNP number transfer can occur if the number is local to the service area where the transfer is to occur, and if Ting offers coverage in that area. If eligible, you may be able to transfer your existing wireless phone number to Ting.

In order to transfer your existing phone number from another carrier to Ting, the number must be in active service with your current provider. Toll-free numbers are not eligible for a transfer.

How long will it take to port my phone number to Ting?

On average, transfers of mobile phone numbers take 2-24 hours. If you're transferring a land line or Google Voice or other VOIP number, it will take 5-7 days.

Will I still be able to use my phone while my number is porting?

Yes, your line will stay active during the porting process. If you notice your line is no longer active, it has successfully made the move to Ting and you should check your email for final activation steps.

Can I port a number to a data device?

No. Numbers can only be ported to phones.

How will I know if there’s a problem with my number transfer?

Problems with number ports usually stem from information not matching up with your existing carrier. If we run into a problem while porting your phone number over to Ting, we'll email you to let you know. This article also outlines what to do if there's a problem.

What happens to my current wireless service after I transfer my wireless number to Ting?

If there was only one number in your account, it will automatically be cancelled.

Do I need to cancel my current service to complete the number transfer to Ting?

No, in order to transfer your phone number to Ting, your service must be active. After the number port has been completed, your previous carrier will automatically cancel your account.

Do I continue to pay my existing wireless provider while my number is being transferred to Ting?

Yes. Do not cancel your service while your phone number is in the process of porting to Ting. After the number has successfully ported to Ting we suggest that you call your old provider and ensure you will no longer be billed for that phone number.

Your number transfer form requires a password or PIN from my current carrier, but they didn't give me one. What should I do?

All of the fields in our number transfer form are required, but if there are pieces of information that your current carrier doesn't require to transfer your number, just enter a place holder in the field (i.e. 1234 for PIN or last four digits of SSN, or your phone number for account number). Since your current carrier isn't checking those fields, it doesn't matter what you enter in them. Most carriers do have some PIN requirements though. Click here for more information.

What if I'm transferring my number from an iPhone?

If you're porting your number from an iPhone to an Android, Windows or feature phone, you'll want to disable iMessaging first. If your number is currently on an iPhone and will remain on an iPhone, then you shouldn't experience any complications.

What if I'm transferring a number that I had in another city or state?

If you move from New York, with a local number to Los Angeles, people calling you would be dialing a long distance New York number. So to be fair, if you move to another city or state, it might make sense to change your phone number so that people in your new town, city, etc., can reach you by making a local call.

Have more questions? Submit a request

Comments

  • Avatar
    Kathrin Stevens

    I ordered the phone to test coverage.  After which I might port.   Ten lines of at&t service on three accounts, looking forward to it.

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    Ben Lucier

    Awesome! Thanks Niel, can't wait to hear your feedback. :)

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    Kyle Anderson

    My current number is part of a "family plan" on Verizon. I am not the owner of the plan, nor is my name associated with the phone. The phone was tacked on as an added pay-by-the-month charge and can be dropped at any time. A friend of mine is the owner of the plan. He's aware that I'm switching and has no problem with it. Will transferring my number be a smooth process? Is there anything myself or the owner of the current plan needs to do before I request to transfer the number? The new phone should arrive Monday, and I'm excited to try the service. Everything about it sounds great. Thanks in advance.

    -Kyle-

  • Avatar
    Ben Lucier

    Hi Kyle,

    You'll need to enter your friend's details (name, address, pin code, SSN) exactly as they are listed on his Verizon account, or the port could fail. So before you attempt to port the number to us, give him a call and make sure he verifies the correct info he has on file with Verizon. You should also make sure your friend is aware that by porting his phone number over to Ting, whatever services he has tied to that number with Verizon will be cancelled as well.

    Looking forward to having you as a customer!

    -Ben

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    Cindy Gonzales

    I am more than 24 hours post portability confirmation yet my phone is not yet activated.  Since the number has been ported my old phone is no longer any good, but neither is my new one.  And the weekend without customer support is definitely making this frustrating.

  • Avatar
    Ben Lucier

    Hi Cindy, sorry you're having trouble. Sometimes it's necessary to force a device to do a network update, rather than waiting for it to do that by itself. If you haven't tried it already, check out our help article on force updating the LG Optimus S: https://help.ting.com/entries/21014512-initiating-a-profile-update-for-your-lg-optimus-s

    If you're still having trouble after that, just open a help request and we'll get some help for you this weekend. 

  • Avatar
    Cindy Gonzales

    Thank you so much!  That was just what was needed!

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    Andrew Biros

    Can you just verify something for me.  I clicked on activate my device to see what questions and options it has.  Under the number portion, you can pick either a new number or to port an existing number.  What I would like to know is, if I pick a new number at this time, how do I port my current number to my Ting device?  Will I need to call to port my number later?  I want to use a new number first to test out service and change it later.

    Thanks for the help.

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    Brandon White

    Andrew, you can go ahead and start with a new number.  Then under your device settings via the Dashboard, there is a link to "Port a number to this device" ( https://ting.com/account/port_swap) that should allow you to port when you are ready.

    Ting: I suggest you add a hint to the page that Andrew is referring to that informs the user "Don't worry, you can choose to port your number later"

  • Avatar
    Ben Lucier

    Andrew, it's always best to port your number now, but like Brandon said, we can port your number later too, it's just a bit more involved.

    Brandon, thanks for chiming in. We're just getting started, and I'm not sure we want to encourage customers to port later because of the manual work involved. Always best to start with the port so the process can be as automated (ie hands off) as possible. But... we always strive to be customer friendly, so we want to be as accommodating as we can. :)

  • Avatar
    Brandon White

    Oh, I see.  I was unaware there was a difference.  Certainly preferring automation is better for everyone in terms of cost and time.

    Andrew is in the same boat as myself and I bet as well as a large portion of your target customers.  We are existing customers of Big Cell and this Ting thing almost sounds too good to be true!  Going from a network we've been on for the last, say, 10 years to Sprint is something that will be approached with caution. 

    I activated my Ting phone last night without a hiccup.  Seems to be working great!  I look forward to porting my number sometime next week.

  • Avatar
    Thomas Marlowe

    When I start the process of porting my number from Sprint to Ting I will incur an early termination fee. Will I have to pay this ETF before Sprint will allow the number to be ported?

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    Terry Westerbeke

    Ben, can Google Voice phone numbers be ported over to Ting?

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    joe Lutz

    I have an ATT land line number that I'd like to port. Can we do this?

  • Avatar
    Ben Lucier

    Hi folks... sorry, I missed some of these comments earlier.

    Thomas: The port should go through successfully, but your previous provider will send you a bill and expect you to pay it. You should probably call them and ask to be sure though.

    Terry: Google Voice numbers can be ported, but most people don't do that. Instead, they keep the GV number where it is and set up call forwarding rules to their cellphone, home, cottage, etc.

    Joe: Yes, AT&T landline numbers can be ported. For some reason, landline numbers take a bit longer to port than mobile numbers do.

    Thanks for your questions everybody!

    -Ben

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    Darrell Bradshaw

    Can I transfer my ATT go phone number?  If so does it take longer?  I am on day 2.  I didn't have an account number that I can see so I put in the phone number again.  Thx

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    Clayton Morgan

    Porting 3 numbers from ATT. Process started 4/26, so far only 1 phone ported over, and that was within an hour. The other 2 as of 4/29 still hasn't ported.  Ting's help-desk is giving us "Application processing error: The port status does not permit the Update Port In activity."  Umm, dumb that down for the rest of us please?

  • Avatar
    Ben Lucier

    Hi Julie,

    Sorry about that.. you shouldn't have seen that message. It's meant to be for our internal use. Since you saw it though, I'll explain:

    When we submit a port-in request, the default date for port completion is set to 7 days. Naturally, we don't want to make customers wait this long, and approx 20 minutes after we submit the port-n request, we follow-up with a due date change request that's about 2 hours out from the port submit time. In some cases, changing the date isn't permitted (this happens a lot with non-mobile numbers). When the due date change request fails, our system generates an automatic help request on your behalf so our customer service team can follow-up.

    In your case, I can see that we had a few of these requests and our customer advisor merged them into a single request (I think that's probably why you saw it). 

    I'm not sure how clear any of this was for you, but I *can* tell you that we're aware of your delay and we're following the progress of your ports. We should have an update for you by tomorrow.

    Sorry about that!

    -Ben 

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    Carmen Hanson

    I am a line on my parents' family plan, not the main account.  Will porting just my number (and, in effect, cancelling it) cause any change to the other lines and plan?

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    Michael Whitman

    Hi Carmen,

    Porting your number out of another plan with multiple numbers will not affect the other users on the plan unless there is a bulk price for the amount of phones that your current carrier is providing to your parents.

    For instance if the current carrier has contract based pricing on three devices, and you are the third, it is possible that they may adjust the plan to reflect a pricing plan of two devices. I would recommend calling the current provider to be sure about the plan changes with the current carrier.

    The porting of your number to Ting would not close their account with the current provider and your parents would continue as normal being able to use their numbers normally.

    When porting your number to Ting, the account owner's information should be used for the port request information to ensure that there are no delays in the port request.

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    Lucy Kuntz

    Someone asked this earlier, but I didn't see a response. My kids and I all have AT&T Go Phones (so no contract or account number) and we'd like to switch to Ting. Can we port our phone numbers? Thanks!

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    Andrew M-C

    Hi Lucy. Absolutely you can port your numbers over to Ting. We'd love to have you. All you need to do is go through the regular sign-up process, buy a device and follow the regular activation process. If you encounter any problems at all along the way, you can give us a call at 1-855-TING-FTW (8am - 8pm EST Monday to Friday) and we'll be happy to help. Thanks!

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    Lucy Kuntz

    Andrew, thanks for the quick response. We're still negotiating about which devices to get, but we'll be switching soon!

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    cory mckibben

    I want to make sure I time the number porting correctly, so I don't get an early termination fee or an extra month of service charges.  My ATT contract expires 8/25/12, so I don't want to start the number porting until after that date since my ATT service will be automatically terminated when I do it, correct?  At that point, I should be billed by ATT only for the time it take to port and not an entire month, correct?  Thanks.

  • Avatar
    Ben Lucier

    Hi Cory,

    Ports happen pretty quickly... generally the same day. You really should check with AT&T though... we'd hate to give you the wrong answer and have you charged the ETF. 

    Can't wait to have you as a customer though!

    -Ben

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    Andrew Osborne

    I see here you saying porting usually happens same-day, but looks like sometimes it can take a few days is that right? I requested a number port last night and still no word on it, how long should I wait before calling customer service? I'm porting from a mobile number.

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    Michael Hoff

    Is there a way to check number portability before ordering?  I show good voice but no data on your maps and it indicates above that not all numbers are portable.  I'd like to know before ordering service.  Thanks.

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    Ben Lucier

    Michael: If you email us the phone number (help@ting.com), we'll do a check on it. We don't currently have a page where users can check their port eligibility, mostly because we almost never have porting problems.

    Andrew: Sorry for the delay! Number ports generally happen within a few hours during the same business day. I'm sure you're all set now, but for others reading this, sometimes the device needs to have an update profile force to complete the porting process.

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    Avi Shevin

    I have a MetroPCS phone on a month-to-month plan.  Is the attached number portable?

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    Jose Cerna

    yes it is but you will have to call metro pcs to get your account # if you dont have  social on the account just enter 000000000 and if you have a pin enter it. Make sure the registered name and address match before porting.

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